Water Works Theatre

This Season | Education | Support | About | FAQ

This Season

Thank you for enjoying Shakespeare Royal Oak 2016! Whether you purchased tickets to Richard III or 12th Night, had a student in our youth education programs, attended the Murder, He Wrote fundraiser, or supported us in other ways, we are most grateful. Water Works is a local independent non-profit arts organization with a rare mission: we offer affordable professional outdoor theatre close to home.

This fall, for the first time, we are asking for your help. For sixteen summers we’ve made the magic of Shakespeare come alive – creating a high-quality affordable cultural experience for everyone in the family. This summer, even though we garnered rave reviews, the rain and heat prevented some of our patrons from enjoying the park shows. Truly, “summer’s lease hath all too short a date!”

You can support us again by clicking the button below!




More >


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Award-winning director and Water Works veteran, Frannie Shepherd-Bates is Education Director for KidsAct! and Water Works Youth Ensemble. More >



There are many ways to support Water Works Theatre Company. You can advertise in our program, volunteer your time or expertise, become a sponsor or make a financial donation. It all ensures that this community jewel continues. Find out how you can help >



Learn more about Water Works Theatre Company: our beginnings, our passion and our future. Tell me the story >



Have questions about your Shakespeare Royal Oak experience? We have the answers. Get the FAQs >



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It was a great summer this year with KidsAct!

This six-day learning experience for students entering grades 1-8 offered instruction in Shakespeare, stage combat, dance, and comedic improvisation from highly qualified, professional teaching artists. Students then performed in an hour-long showcase to be presented for friends and family in Starr Jaycee Park.

Continue reading: KidsAct!

Water Works Youth Ensemble

WWYE logo finalIn its sixth year and with a new name, Water Works Youth Ensemble, our extraordinary high school-age outdoor experience, took on a new challenge. Last year, our high school students auditioned for, performed, and produced a full-fledged production of Romeo and Juliet in the Park – and this year we had more rehearsal time for an even more invigorating performance.

2016’s play was The Tempest.

Continue reading: Water Works Youth Ensemble

Ways to Support Water Works Theatre

Best Kept Secret

Some say Water Works is the area’s best kept cultural secret. But the truth is that since 2001 Water Works has presented the biggest and best outdoor professional Shakespeare festival in Michigan. We’re proud to say that we have inspired many other groups to pop up around the state, and we encourage their legacy.  Yet we still offer your family the highest quality, affordable cultural experience anywhere.  From our friendly atmosphere and first rate performances, to our top-notch education programs, we guarantee you will love your time in the park with us.

Help Us This Year

It’s all close to home in a beautiful park in two perfect midsummer weeks. But we need YOU to help keep the dream alive. Think about it: when you go to Stratford, see a Broadway play or even a touring show downtown, you will easily spend more than double Water Works’ ticket prices. Not to mention all the travel, dining and parking.

We’re asking you to help us make up the difference between what we charge our audience, and what it really takes to do it right.

Spread the Word!

  • Recommend us to your company for sponsorship
  • Bring a group to the show. Call 248.399.3727 if your group is ten (10) or more!
  • Make a tax deductible donation.
  • Promote us on Facebook and other social media.
  • Please help this wonderful local jewel of the arts. Together we can make 2014 our biggest and best year ever! Thank you!


Reach over 3,000 sophisticated patrons by advertising with us.  Full, half and quarter page ads are available now.


Caught the bug? Water Works puts interns and community-minded volunteers to work and they enjoy the fun too. From marketing, signage, hospitality to ushering and even backstage jobs, we have it all. Let us know what area interests you, and we’ll find a fit! Just send us an e-mail and we’ll get back to you!

Sponsorship Opportunities

For two weeks in the park, Water Works expects to impact 3500+ patrons to our ticketed theatre events. Over 50 professional artists and teachers are employed, and 80 to 100 local families enjoy the excitement of our outdoor education programs. Each year we also offer growth opportunities for 6 interns beyond high school.

While Water Works collects audience feedback to measure satisfaction and assist us in our future programming decisions, we do not directly solicit age and address information from our patrons. Our experience since 2001 has shown us, however, that our audience is culturally diverse, generally with (or pursuing) higher education, geographically central to Royal Oak, with high awareness of the arts and appreciation for community quality of life issues.  We see significant long term loyalty in our audiences, and in families in our education programs.  For most of those who come to be entertained, to be educated, or to work at their craft here, Shakespeare in the Park in Royal Oak has become a valued annual tradition.

Share Water Works’ commitment to keeping professional Shakespeare in this community by financially sponsoring our production. Please contact Water Works Theatre Company at 248.399.3727 or email us for sponsorships of $500.00 or more. We want to make the most of your support. Thank you!


Online donations are gratefully accepted. Please also contact Water Works Theatre Company at 248.399.3727 or email us for donation information.